During a recession, some businesses cut their advertising budgets to save money. Although this can give short term relief, it will likely pave the way to long term loss of revenue and maybe even closure.
What if a shop owner, fearing a recession and loss of trade, turned off the lights in their window display to save money on electricity? They would see some savings on their power bill, but their customers will quickly disappear simply because they assume they’re not open.
It’s the same when you stop your advertising, customers don’t see you.
This is because they think you’re not open or worse you’ve gone out of business and quickly find your competitor who are still advertising and keeping their lights on.
There is no time to lose
Waiting until the lockdown is over is a dangerous mistake to make.
Unlike normal recessions, this recession fell upon us almost overnight. There were no gloomy forecasts from government and economists — no noticeable decline in business, just a sudden stop. The economy did not ground to a halt – it crashed. Thousands of thriving companies have been forced to close, and their owners are wondering if there will be customers when the lockdown is finally lifted.
It’s never as bad as it seems
Many experts are predicting life will never go back how it was before the COVID-19 virus arrived and they may be right, and many things will change, but people will not have changed. They will still need the same products and services they did before.
A survey taken by Marketing Week reveals fifty-five per cent of marketers have decided to delay or review any campaigns’ they had planned. Another study conducted by Econsultancy and Marketing Week reveals 887 UK brand marketers have delayed or are reviewing their budget commitments.
Despite prophecies of doom, many businesses will emerge from this lockdown, and they will be hoping for customers.
The real businessmen and businesswomen in the community who believe in their businesses and realise there is a future for them if they react in the right way to ensure there is a future after coronavirus. They won’t be hoping for customers they will be doing what is necessary to absolutely ensure they do.
Normality will return
As the lockdown is gradually relaxed we will all be looking get our lives back to normal.
We are still driving cars, we need servicing, we need repairs and MOT stations. We have gardens and are still looking for gardeners. Most of us live in houses and flats, painters, decorators and general handymen are still in demand. Soon, we hope, restaurants, pubs, bars, gyms and hairdressers will be allowed to open. All these businesses will be looking for customers and they will have to advertise.
However, not all of these business owners will be feeling optimistic. The lockdown would have played havoc with their finances, and they will be very nervous about spending money. Although it may be hard to be optimistic in these unusual times, it is in everybody’s interest to advertise, and it is in our interest to convince all our customers that leaflet distribution is still one of the best ways to advertise.
Promoting Leaflet Distribution
Leaflet distribution was never directly restricted by the lockdown. Some Post-People decided to keep off the streets and a number of clients stopped their campaigns but we were never banned.
Now that the lockdown is slowly being relaxed the government and our trade body the DMA are very keen for us to get back to the level of activity we were achieving in January & February as soon as possible, on the basis that not only is it good for businesses but it’s good for the community as well.
A valuable lesson from the past
During the great depression of the nineteen twenties, the leading supplier of ready-to-eat cereals in the USA was Post brand. When the depression began to bite, this company decided to cut its advertising budget drastically. At the same time, one of its rivals, Kelloggs, doubled their advertising budget during the recession and introduced a new product, Rice Krispies. They also introduced the characters Snap Crackle and Pop.
The result of this action saw Kellogg’s profits increase by thirty per cent, and they became the leading cereal provider in the USA for many decades. All the work Post brand had put in during the good times was lost when they cut their advertising.
Even though these are unprecedented times, patterns and consumer actions that develop today could eventually cause a shift in long-term behaviour. Brave moves now might make sense for your business in the longer term.
Consumers and householders are your valuable audience and businesses that continue to advertise will enjoy increased prominence as consumers still need all the things they were buying before. Businesses that continue to advertise through the coronavirus crisis will enjoy an increased market share in the long term. If you don’t, your competitor will.
If you’re interested in starting a leaflet distribution campaign, we can help. Get in touch with us today.